Gatwe Primary School is a rural village school in Embu County on the southern slopes of Mount Kenya, currently serving around 300 students. In February 2011 Moving Mountains Kenya staff visited the school and found it in a very poor condition and in need of urgent renovation. Classrooms were in a dilapidated state made up of semi-permanent buildings with dirt floors harbouring jigger fleas and scarce resources meant that up to seven students shared each desk.

After visiting Gatwe we subsequently agreed to support the school with a plan to gradually 
renovate and replace the dilapidated infrastructure to transform facilities and the learning environment for the students. Thanks to the agreement of a long-term partnership of support with Sarah's HOPE, an organisation from a school in Ontario, Canada, we have been able to support Gatwe with the construction and renovation of eight classrooms to date (2016), helping to slowly transform the quality of facilities at the school. 

Gatwe Primary School - Map

As with all of our school construction projects, we do more than simply build new infrastructure; we construct a lasting relationship with the school and community. Through ongoing management advice and support, we are empowering the school management committee and the wider community to turn the school into a dynamic agent through a process of long-term sustainable development of the local area. 

Gatwe Primary School - Map (1)
Gatwe Primary School - Google Maps view

We have also helped to pioneer the use of a new appropriate building technique at Gatwe called 'Interlocking Brick' technology. This technique uses a machine to compress soil, sand, and cement into bricks which are then fitted together to provide strong and durable structures at a reduced cost. In this way we are helping to improve facilities for current students and future generations, turning the school into an asset for the local area whilst providing training and creating employment for local people. Read a post on the MM blog about our pioneering use of interlocking brick technology.

Gatwe Primary School (1)

History of the Project

2011 – Moving Mountains began supporting the school and built the first classroom with interlocking brick technology.

2012 – The construction of a second classroom was completed using interlocking bricks

2013 – Renovation of third and fourth classrooms including the rendering of walls, relaying of floors, hard-paving of the external covered walkway between classrooms, painting of inside and outside of classrooms and installation of rooves, doors, and windows.

2014 – Renovation of two further half-built classrooms (four initial structures were built previously by the school using Kenyan government 'Community Development Funds' but left unfinished due to lack of funds for completion). Renovation work included rendering of walls, relaying of floor, painting of inside and outside of classroom and installation of door and windows

2015 - Completion of the four classrooms that were previously started with 'Community Development funds' from the Kenyan Government.

Gatwe Primary School (6)

Main Donors

Sarah's HOPE, North Grenville District High School in Ontario, Canada 

Kaveh Guilanpour for funding the purchase of an interlocking brick machine 

Adams' Grammar School, Newport, Shropshire

Granaghan Outreach Charitable Trust

Get Involved

Volunteering - teaching non-examinable subjects such as music, sport, arts, ethics, plus running extra-curricular clubs and providing small group reading lessons, mentoring and group therapy work. 

Future Aims

We aim to replace or renovate the remaining classrooms at Gatwe before the end of 2018. We also aim to improve additional school infrastructure by building a school kitchen with an eco-stove installed, library, improvements to the toilets and rainwater harvesting system.

Help us achieve our goals and provide access to education for as many children in Kenya as possible. Make a donation today!



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